Bandh disrupts normal life in Rayagada

Rayagada: Normal life came to a standstill in Rayagada districts due to a six-hour bandh called by the district Adivasi Yuva Samaj in protest against the crossfire at Krutamgada in Kandhamal district, which claimed the lives of six innocent tribals, including a 15-month old baby.

Members of the Samaj blocked roads at many places bringing vehicular movement to a grinding halt in the district. The agitating members were also seen picketing in many places by burning tyres on the road.

However, emergency services and educational institutions were spared from the purview of the shutdown.

Meanwhile, a high-level team led by BJP state president Basant Panda is scheduled to visit the spot today.

A team of BJD leaders consisting of ministers Ramesh Majhi, Sudam Marandi, Snehangini Churia and senior leader Bhupinder Singh will also visit Gumudamah and meet family members of the deceased today.

Yesterday, BJP and Congress, in a rare show of solidarity, observed a dawn-to-dusk bandh in Kalahandi district protesting against the crossfire.

Notably on June 8 night, six civilians, including a 13-year-old boy and a 15-month-old were killed during an alleged exchange of fire between security personnel and Maoists at Malapanga forest. Survivors and human rights activists, however, have challenged the official version and alleged that it was cold-blooded murder by the SOG personnel.